MacBook Air to get Penryn chip

August 15, 2008 | 09:02

Tags: #air #laptop #macbook #macbook-air #merom #notebook #penryn #performance #ultra-portable

Companies: #apple #intel

If you're in the market for a MacBook Air, you might want to hold off on your purchase for a little while longer.

The rumour over at CNet is that the ultra-thin sliver of sexiness that is the Air is due a refresh in the next few weeks. Quoting PhoneNews.com, the article states that an upgrade to move the Air to Intel's 45nm 'Penryn' Core 2 Duo processors from its current low-power custom chip based on the 'Merom' – a move which would bring the Air's performance closer to that of its more weighty brethren in the MacBook line.

The process won't be the only thing getting tweaked, either: rumour has it that the version of the Air equipped with a standard mechanical hard disk will be boosted to 120GB with the option to grab 160GB if you've got the readies.

The down side to all this performance tweaking is, of course, battery life. Although the Penryn core will bring improved performance, it will also dramatically increase power consumption. While it's likely that Apple will boost the battery capacity to compensate, it's still likely that we'll be seeing Airs lasting less time on battery and getting hotter in the process.

With US retailers already having been informed of the changes – despite the use of non-disclosure agreements, these snippets have a tendency to leak – we can expect to see the more powerful Airs in the coming months, in the US at least.

Will the extra power tempt you to get the slimline Air, or do you demand more modularity from your laptops – or at least a battery you can switch out without having to dismantle the thing? Share your thoughts over in the forums.
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